ANGELS FALLING (Signed Paperback)

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“Death is Underrated”

The ritualistic murder of a Catholic archbishop scrambles the lives of an ex-seminarian criminal profiler, a renegade priest cult leader, and the former nun they both desired. Ruptured personalities engage in a crime drama with religious, cultural, and familial conflict.

An emotionless villain in a clerical collar murders the Archbishop of Washington, then leaves him in a crucifixion pose before the altar of St. Matthew’s Cathedral. A statuette left at the scene leads criminal profiler Pete Sullivan to suspect a diabolical motive. Enigmatic ex-nun Maria Santos—Pete’s first crush last seen at their expulsion from a Roman Catholic seminary twenty years ago—joins the investigative task force as a forensic psychologist.

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Description

“Death is Underrated”

The ritualistic murder of a Catholic archbishop scrambles the lives of an ex-seminarian criminal profiler, a renegade priest cult leader, and the former nun they both desired. Ruptured personalities engage in a crime drama with religious, cultural, and familial conflict.

An emotionless villain in a clerical collar murders the Archbishop of Washington, then leaves him in a crucifixion pose before the altar of St. Matthew’s Cathedral. A statuette left at the scene leads criminal profiler Pete Sullivan to suspect a diabolical motive. Enigmatic ex-nun Maria Santos—Pete’s first crush last seen at their expulsion from a Roman Catholic seminary twenty years ago—joins the investigative task force as a forensic psychologist.

Excerpts. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

PROLOGUE

Death is underrated. . . 

Kill or die? That is the question. Live to kill. Kill to die. Surcease of sorrow? Not. Death never kills me.

My soul from out that shadow? Shall death die? Balm in Gilead?

Nevermore. . . 

CHAPTER ONE

Reuel removed the bloody, oil-stained latex gloves and stepped back to admire his handiwork. Perfect. He swept his gaze around the sanctuary of St. Matthew’s Cathedral then glanced toward the Chapel of the Holy Angels in a loft to the right. After trading the dirty gloves for a fresh pair from the roll-aboard case, he extracted a fourteen-inch statuette and placed it near his victim’s head. He turned the statuette a few degrees so that it faced the dead man’s heart. . .

CHAPTER TWO

Pete Sullivan glanced at his smartwatch as he passed the six-mile marker of the Marine Corps Marathon. Nine minutes, thirty-eight seconds per mile. He needed to average nine-minute miles to meet his goal of finishing in four hours or fewer.

An annoying beep in his ear.

Without breaking stride, Pete pulled his phone from his fanny pack and hit Answer.

“What?” He panted into the phone to emphasize being bothered by the interruption.

A somewhat familiar male voice answered. “Pete Sullivan?”

“Yeah.” More panting.

“Tony Mason, FBI.”

Deflated, Pete breathed into the phone as he continued running, his pace slowing against his will. “What do (pant) you want?”

“You. How soon can you get to St. Matthew’s Cathedral?” . . .

CHAPTER THREE

Maria Santos arrived back at her apartment ten minutes later than planned. When she unlocked the front door, a peculiar sensation washed over her. As if someone was with her. She shook it off. Not the first time her mind tricked her. She dropped her workout bag in her bedroom, threw her gym clothes into the hamper, and headed for the shower.

After the shower, Maria stood in front of the mirror over the sink and dried her long black hair with a second towel. She reached for her hairbrush, but her fingers closed on nothing. The brush was not in its usual spot on the counter just to the right of the sink. She found it a foot away, nearer the toilet.

“That’s odd,” she said. She always put the brush in the same place. Then she recalled her morning rush to get to her Krav Maga class.

Must have dropped the brush in the rush.

The phone rang in her bedroom. She answered it, holding back her still-damp hair as she held the phone to her ear.

“Dr. Santos?” Female voice, serious.

“Yes?”

“This is Detective Louise Vandermark, Metro Police.”

A chill shot up Maria’s spine. Did I do something I don’t remember? Again?

Her voice quivered. “Okay.”

“I’m lead investigator for a murder that took place this morning at St. Matthew’s Cathedral.”

Additional information

Weight 18.2 oz
Dimensions 9 × 6 × 1 in

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